Fatty acid composition of milk from Holstein-Friesian, Brown Swiss, Simmental and Alpine Grey cows predicted by mid-infrared spectroscopy

Paolo Gottardo, Mauro Penasa*, Federico Righi, Nicolas Lopez-Villalobos, Martino Cassandro, Massimo De Marchi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The aim of this study was to investigate the sources of variation of milk fatty acids (FA) routinely predicted by mid-infrared spectroscopy in Holstein-Friesian (HF), Brown Swiss (BS), Simmental (SI) and Alpine Grey (AG) cattle breeds. A linear mixed model was used to analyse the data which included 153,801 individual milk samples from 14,301 cows. Fixed effects included in the model were breed, month of sampling, year of sampling, stage of lactation, parity and first order interactions between them, and random effects were herd nested within breed, cow nested within breed and the residual error. Milk of AG cows exhibited the lowest content of saturated FA and the greatest content of unsaturated FA, whereas milk of BS had an opposite pattern. Holstein-Friesian and SI were intermediate between AG and BS breeds for all the FA except for total C18:1, which was the greatest in HF. Saturated FA, C14:0 and C16:0 increased from calving until 120 days in milk, whereas unsaturated FA and C18:1 decreased. First parity cows produced milk with lower concentration of de novo FA than multiparous animals. The greatest content of unsaturated FA and C18:1 was observed in summer, whereas saturated FA, C14:0, C16:0 and C18:0 decreased in summer and increased in winter. The differences in milk FA profile among breeds are useful for genetic selection and for feeding strategies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)380-389
Number of pages10
JournalItalian Journal of Animal Science
Volume16
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 10 Mar 2017

Keywords

  • Cow milk
  • fatty acid
  • mid-infrared spectroscopy
  • mountain area
  • season
  • CARDIOVASCULAR-DISEASE RISK
  • CONJUGATED LINOLEIC-ACID
  • GENETIC-PARAMETERS
  • DAIRY-CATTLE
  • BOVINE-MILK
  • RUMINAL ACIDOSIS
  • LACTATION
  • PROFILE
  • STAGE
  • TRAITS

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